Nicola Cook Blog Posts

Cut The Cake or Build a P.A.M?
One of the biggest decisions you will need to make as your sales team begins to grow is how to[...]
Avoiding Sales Recruitment Nightmares
Ask a room full of entrepreneurs if they've ever made a recruitment mistake and everyone will raise their hand before[...]
Five Quick Fixes to Improve Your Sales Productivity
I spend all day everyday fine tuning my clients' Sales Engines and not surprisingly there are some common ‘quick fixes'[...]
Building A System To Encourage Learning At Work
Last night I gave the keynote address at my old school's Speech Day... Apart from being an immensely humbling experience,[...]
When Was The Last Time You Stress Tested Your Sales Engine?
So, the Brexit debate rumbles on and parliament remains paralysed. Meanwhile, we shall keep calm and carry on while the[...]
There’s An App For That
How many times have you heard one of your employees tell you about yet another App or piece of software[...]
Lessons From The Best In The World
Last month, during our family holiday to Walt Disney World in Florida, I took the opportunity to spend a day[...]
Not All Sales Engines Are Created Equal
One of the most popular parts of my live keynote is the explanation of the different types of buyers, their[...]
Avoiding Insanity
If like most ambitious business owners your focus is on growth, have you formulated a plan on how to achieve[...]
Can ‘Sales’ Ever Be A Professional Career?
If you're a parent, imagine how you would feel if your thirteenyear-old, whilst sitting around the dinner table one evening,[...]
“S’Marketing” Explained
What is it and why you need to know about it? Occasionally at a networking event you’ll hear a bunch[...]
Are Good Sales People Born Or Bred?
How do we make our youth more employer ready and equip them with the necessary skills that our businesses need?[...]
Are You a Heroic Sales Leader Or Are You Harbouring One In Your Business?
Without a sale, no other department in the business need exist, so it's no surprise that capability and expertise in[...]
4 Killer Templates for Sales Growth Leaders
​4 Killer Templates for sales growth from our Framework Library that our clients used to help them achieve an average[...]
Building a movement, the importance of your first followers
Thank you to Club Member Derek Hill who shared this short video with me yesterday. It's a powerful demonstration of how[...]
When the cat’s away…
"When the cat's away the mice will play" (meaning when the cats not around to watch, the mice will get[...]
Avoiding the Competency Trap
“The honest answer is after we reach £1M I haven’t a clue what I’m meant to be doing!” That was[...]
The Ultimate Budget Planner Template
Are you ready?  Making a budget - It’s that time of the year again when you should be digging out[...]
Are you intimidated by your bank?
Every growing business needs working capital and that may mean raising funds to cash flow growth. Knowing what capital you[...]
Are You Business Fit?
The first decision I made at the turn of the year, which I announced to the Company Shortcuts team at our[...]
Good strategy, Bad strategy…
is the name of the book I'm currently devouring...   And it comes highly recommended. Suddenly so much of advice[...]
How Much Are You Prepared to Give Away?
… and no I’m not talking equity  rather your role?   I heard a great nugget recently from Anthony Fletcher, the CEO of fast-growing business[...]
How sales process mapping links to building brand
There’s a reason why at Company Shortcuts, we keep banging on about the importance of creating ‘Your Sales Process Map’,[...]
A great tip when building a team of A Grade Players
We all know we want a team of A Grade Players for our businesses. A critical part of scaling our[...]
Navigating the commission maze
Commission schemes. Do you have one? Does it work – i.e. does it drive the team behaviours you want? And[...]
Do you stress test your marketing?
Last week I had the luxury of a couple of focused days with my Chairman Lara, reviewing business plans, current[...]
Solving the productivity puzzle
We’re used to seeing people walking down the street randomly talking into thin air – until you see the little[...]
Are you maxing the sales hours of the day?
So – how much of your team's resources last week was focused on income generating activities? 100% perfect, 50% or[...]
Can a man work in his wife’s business?
I first wrote a blog on this topic a few years ago and it definitely ruffled a few feathers so, in[...]
Firms recognise the importance of Street Smart over Book Smart
Earlier today I was standing in front of 200 young people (Year 11’s) sharing my story from school through to[...]
Do you own a Job or a Business?
If like me you have watched Dragon’s Den you will be familiar with the phrase “this is a lifestyle business[...]
Sales IS the heart of growth
Answer this ONE question… What is the single most important strategic sales activity, that if applied consistently by your business[...]
3 ways to close a deal
Nicola Cook walks you through how to define when a deal is really closed and suggests how you might improve[...]
Is Your Sales Team Focused on Revenue or Profit?
After closing, what at the time, was the biggest deal personally in our business Company Shortcuts, I celebrated in such[...]
Your first sales hire – 4 tips before you start
The first sales hire may slow you down at first but get it right & adhere to these 4 strategic[...]
Build on your Natural Selling Style
It's important to be honest about both the strengths AND challenges different selling styles present. Nicola Cook explains in greater[...]
Know your selling style
Whether you approach it with fearless passion or like you do a chat with your best mate, everyone has a natural[...]
Managing different selling styles in a team
As you may have gathered from the content already covered on this topic, there is no one definitive successful style. In[...]
Be prepared for your sales meetings. Always.
I watched a fascinating programme on the BBC recently. Essentially it asked what the Health Service could learn from other[...]
Avoid Recruitment Headaches
It’s the people who will build your business, therefore, recruit the best talent at the earliest possible opportunity. Never compromise[...]
Help us sell more!
"Tell us what we need to say to our prospective customers to make them want to buy." Less telling, more[...]
Adapting to changing buyer behaviour
The New Sales Function The latest research from Forrester demonstrates the critical need for businesses to adapt their sales function if they[...]
When is the deal really closed?
Have you ever been the salesperson feeling hugely disappointed that a piece of business you had considered ‘closed’ went to[...]
How to close like a ‘Geordie’
11 actions to implement today that will immediately secure more commitment from prospects. If you’re not a native of the North[...]
When is a Sale a Sale?
When is a sale a sale? - depending on who you talk to in your organisation will depend on the answer[...]
Who would you hire in 2015?
The Apprentice versus Apprenticeships As I write this, we are approaching the pointy end of the current UK Apprentice TV[...]
I’m drowning … how to manage the tirade of communication when you’re leading a fast growing business
It’s not that long ago that we all had Rolodexes (which doubled as our own personal CRM), phones were attached[...]
Don’t let sales inhibitors into your business…
Is your customer buying experience digitally enabled? The final step of any business’s sales process is finalising the transaction with[...]
Big business results fuelled with small business juice
Is it possible to grow a global brand and deliver big business results, yet retain the juiciness and creativity that[...]
The Importance of Powerful Peers
It’s a fact that we become like the five people we spend the most time with, therefore it’s so important[...]
The importance of leading oneself, before empowering others by Nicola Cook
Or what we call Leadership Inside Out. What defines a successful leader? It’s a question often asked during our keynotes[...]
One Thing All Businesses Must Do To Accelerate Sales Growth
Answer this ONE question … What is the single most important strategic sales activity that if applied consistently by your[...]
Why Are You in Business?
Whenever I begin working with a new client, one of the very first questions I ask them is ‘why are[...]
Sales – or Sell More!
Recently I was lucky enough to be asked to do a presentation for the brilliant Julie Meyer at her Entrepreneur[...]
Cash is King
Having and keeping your staff is great but without a steady cash flow your company will not survive, One of[...]